I’m not going to pick on him today, because after the wallops he took last time he broached the subject, I’ve got to give him credit for having the balls to go after it again. Instead, I’m simply going to highlight his inclusion of the following from Dahlia Lithwick:
And so a clutch of women are left on the pink margins of the page, to wring our hands and, well, discuss among ourselves. The subtext will thus remain that anyone choosing to speak out on this is somehow hysterical or overemotional; that this is not a "serious" problem since serious people (i.e., men) aren't addressing it. All of which practically guarantees that nothing will be done about defining, measuring, or redressing the issue in the long term. Claims that no man wants to step on the landmine of political correctness, gender stereotyping, and identity politics should not justify bowing out of the conversation. Maureen Dowd, Deborah Tannen, and Anne Applebaum are smart, serious people. They have taken the time to initiate a conversation. They deserve serious responses from men and women alike.Well, here’s my very serious response.
We’re not going to get anywhere as long as the male bloggers who post about this issue continue to do so with such appalling intellectual dishonesty. In private emails, male bloggers who publicly wring their hands about how to solve the problem of the dearth of women bloggers in the upper echelon, will admit that the reality is the difficulty of finding women worth linking to.
Women don’t give me much linkable material.
Women write on subjects that don’t interest me.
Women don’t know how to compromise on abortion rights.
Why don’t women post about Social Security? It affects them, too.
Women don’t write commentary, don’t come up with new ideas.
Gender politics is all secondary issues.
The day I see any one of those notions let loose for open debate on one of the blogs authored by a man who holds those opinions is the day we might actually get somewhere with this discussion. Until then, take all the disingenuous bullshit philosophizing about whether women can hack the blogosphere, the percentage of women in the blogosphere, and all the rest of it, and shove it up your asses.
I’m willing to have a long and interesting conversation with anyone who’s willing to tell me point blank that I and other women bloggers don’t write on subjects that interest them and don’t give them much linkable material. I’m willing to discuss it for as long as it takes to convince them that gender politics (including both women’s issues and gay rights issues) are not secondary issues to half their party, and that the idea of anyone calling him- or herself a political blogger who ignores political issues of primacy to large swaths of their party is patently absurd. I’m willing to have a talk about the deeply ingrained and insidious sexism that is really at the root cause of this problem.
But as long as there’s a collective reluctance to replace the faux suppositions with the real prejudices in the navel-gazing posts, there’s no one with whom to have that conversation. Except, of course, my fellow bloggrrls, none of whom ever actually believed it’s anything other than the same old tired biases, anyway. Being more creative at disguising them behind your wide-eyed mystification about where all the women are isn’t clever; it’s pathetic.
[UPDATE: Lest anyone think I'm a total shady bitch, I did secure the authors' permissions for referencing the content of private email exchanges before writing this post. The only condition was anonymity.]